I come across a lot of thought-provoking research in my tireless quest to figure out why the world is so overweight. But this latest study was particularly eye-opening to me. And it won’t take long to see why.
This new research explores the unique flavor profiles of the foods that are fueling the obesity crisis and driving overconsumption. And scientists being scientists, they’ve come up with their own word for this addictive taste: “hyperpalatable.”
Fat, salt, sugar, carbs
It’s not as complicated as it sounds: A hyperpalatable food is simply one in which specific components—namely, fat, salt, sugar, and carbs—are combined in a way to make it unnaturally tasty.
And I want to emphasize one word in that phrase in particular: unnatural. The majority of these foods are the very processed and packaged Frankenfoods I have been warning you about from the beginning.
But what’s really disturbing is that this study showed 62 percent of foods in the U.S. qualify as being “hyperpalatable.” (Including a few foods that you might not even think of as addictively tasty.)
And are you surprised? Because I’m most certainly not.
At this point, it’s a matter of public knowledge that the villains running the food industry have established formulas—specific combinations of fat, sugar, salt, and carbs—that they rely on to maximize consumption and keep those profits rolling in.
Let me paint a picture for you: Most of the hyperpalatable foods—some 70 percent—were extra tasty because of their fat and sodium content. (Bacon and pizza fall into this category.) A quarter were hyperpalatable based on their fat and sugar content. (Think cake and ice cream.) And 16 percent qualified as hyperpalatable based on their carbohydrate and sodium content. (Bread and chips fall into this category.)
And while I don’t necessarily agree that all of the foods the researchers pinpointed as “hyperpalatable” are dangerous—a little bit of bacon certainly won’t kill you—it’s hard to argue with their deliciousness. Now, granted, no one wants to eat food that doesn’t taste good. But when something tastes too good, it opens up a Pandora’s box of consequences…
Repeat after me: Real food only
Boiling this down, just think about candy bars, chips, and cookies—how sweet, salty, and insanely pleasurable they are to eat. How quickly you gain weight by consuming them. And most importantly, how hard it is to stop eating them.
The fact is, there’s a reason for that. And in most cases, Big Food—just like Big Tobacco before it—specifically designed their products to be this way.
These hyperpalatable foods light up our brain’s reward centers, generating a euphoric eating experience that completely overrides our “brakes” and makes it nearly impossible to stop eating, even when our bodies tell us we’re full.
And you want to hear the worst part? So-called “diet” foods are some of the worst offenders of them all.
Of the roughly 500 items in the database that had labels like “low fat,” “fat free,” “sugar free,” “low salt,” or “low calorie,” nearly half—that’s right, HALF—met the researchers’ criteria for hyperpalatability.
The food industry is turning billions in profits by making addicts of the American population, right in plain sight. And while we all sit around and wring our hands over the obesity crisis, no one is doing anything to stop them.
Sadly, I don’t see that changing anytime soon. But that doesn’t mean you have to fall victim to this long-running scheme. Just do what I do, and don’t eat anything your grandparents wouldn’t recognize as food. It is really that simple.
What do I mean by that? Well, if a food has a label at all, that’s strike one. And if you can’t read the ingredients on that label? It’s not real food—and you definitely shouldn’t be eating it.
P.S. For more insight into food labels and how you can avoid being duped, take a look at the November 2019 issue of my monthly Logical Health Alternatives newsletter (“How Big Food’s favorite marketing ploy is hurting consumers, animals, and the environment”). Subscribers have access to all of my past content in the archives. So if you haven’t already, sign up today—all it takes is one click!
“’Hyperpalatable’ Defined as Foods Driving the Obesity Epidemic.” Medscape Medical News, 11/18/2019. (medscape.com/viewarticle/921472)